Cy Wakeman Blog

Restore sanity to the workplace and be happier at work and in life.

Cy shares her Reality-Based Philosophy in her frequent blogs.

There are only two ways to go through Valentine’s Day: with joy or misery. It’s your choice. There are people that greet this holiday with great excitement, and others who absolutely dread it. At Reality-Based Leadership, this is one of our favorite holidays because so much of our work is rooted in love! But if you’re one of the haters, here’s the good news: Suffering on this love holiday is completely optional!

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The holidays are almost here and you may be scrambling to find a last minute gift for those on your list, or simply anticipating a bit of a break where you can rest, enjoy family, and rejuvenate yourself for the new year. Why not share the gift of a great book – or take the time to read one for yourself. Go ahead, you deserve it!

Our Reality-Based Leadership team has gathered a list of our favorite reads that will have a bit of something for everyone, from books on business leadership and change, to motivational and self-reflection topics, to great authors like Brene Brown and Simon Sinek.  And, we didn’t forget a bit of great poetry!

We hope you enjoy.

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My entry into Reality-Based Leadership started with the Open-Door Policy.

After several years as a family therapist, I got a promotion in my organization. For the first time, I would be leading a team, which got me a free ticket to the Human Resources boot camp for managers. Designed to prepare me for my new organizational role, it was basically a crash course in the current conventional wisdom around leadership.

One particularly juicy leadership gem, delivered to me by trainers with all the confidence in the world, was that a great leader always has an open door.

An open door? That was easy. Not only was I going to have an Open-Door Policy, I was going to ace it! I hustled down to the gift shop at the health center where I worked and bought a doorstop to make a visible and decorative point: I’d have the most outstanding Open Door in the organization.

The Open-Door Policy did exactly what it was supposed to do. Soon team members began popping their heads into my Open Door.

“Do you have a minute?” they asked.

“Sure, I have two!” I’d reply. “Come on in.”

It didn’t take long to realize that these people were liars. They’d ask for a minute or two, but then stayed planted in my office for an average of 45 minutes.

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Spring has sprung and it’s the ideal time to take inventory of your personal and/or professional goals for the year. Think back to the New Year’s resolutions you set in January. Are you making progress as you should or have your plans been derailed?

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People who are personally accountable have an internal motivation and desire to succeed, no matter what obstacles stand in their way. Employees who exhibit this quality are naturally the happiest and most engaged. In fact, the same behaviors that drive engagement are the exact same behaviors that drive happiness. The happiest employees are the ones who realize that they directly impact their own results and circumstances. They don’t view external factors or challenges as a threat. Rather, they can take full ownership of both achievements and failures because they started with a wholehearted commitment.  You see, owning your outcomes will hurt if you aren’t fully committed to your job in the first place.  Continue reading